Multi-stakeholder partnerships: Building blocks for success

This report provides an evidence-based assessment of the performance of multi-stakeholder partnerships for sustainable development concluding that the overall performance of partnerships is mixed at best, and discussing factors that increased the likelihood of partnerships being successful and effective. 

This resource and the following information was contributed to BetterEvaluation by Tiina Pasanen, Overseas Development Institute (ODI). The information below was provided by Tiina Pasenen and Alice Macfarlan.

Authors and their affiliation

Ros Tennyson – author. Development Director, Partnership Brokers Association. Emily Wood – research & design. Manager, Partnership Brokers Association.

Key features

This report summarises existing scholarship on multi-stakeholder partnerships for sustainable development, aiming to identify the building blocks for successful and effective partnerships.

It then describes, discusses and prioritises nine building blocks that increase the likelihood of a successful partnership: leadership, partners, goal-setting, funding, management, monitoring, meta-governance, problem-structure and socio-political context.

Finally, it ends with a call to action for designing and implementing successful multi-stakeholder partnerships for sustainable development.

How have you used or intend on using this resource?

This report can be a useful starting point in researching partnerships. The authors have surveyed the existing literature to present a partnership typology and elicit the central themes that occupy researchers, including effectiveness and legitimacy.

Why would you recommend it to other people?

The discussions and the results of the study are based on an extensive literature review and supported by six in-depth case studies including Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI), Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI), the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), the Climate and Clean Air Coalition to reduce short-lived climate pollutants (CCAC) and the German Food Partnership (GFP).


International Civil Society Centre (2014) Multi-stakeholder Partnerships Building Blocks for Success. Retrieved from:

'Multi-stakeholder partnerships: Building blocks for success' is referenced in: